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I need a second opinion on this build (its more or less a new build)

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September 22, 2007 6:50:14 AM

Well, its been roughly a year... maybe more since my last build. This one was made in a hurry because my P4 decided to more or less make a bonfire out of my computer while I was at work. Bad cooling, I presume. Anyways, to the point. As it stands, I've been outta the loop in terms of whats hot and whats not nowadays, and since I need to start thinking about Vista, DX10, and no doubt playing Crysis someday, I need to get myself up to at least lower high-end if I can.

My current specs are as follows:

Case: ThermalTake TsunamiDream
PSU: 450w OCZ ModStream
CPU: AMD Athlon64 3700+
Motherboard: Asus A8N-E nForce4 Ultra
RAM: GeIL ValuRAM 2GB(2x1GB)PC3200DDR
Videocard: eVGA 7800GT 256MB n516 (I think thats the correct revision number, but that hardly matters anyways)
Soundcard: Audigy 2ZS
HDD: 1x SATA Western Digital 120GB (I think... how sad is it that I can't remember off the top of my head anymore. Like I said, its been a while. A LONG while.)


Please, excuse my linking to another forum, but I'm tired, its been a long day, so I honestly can't bear to do this whole post of info over again. I was told at these forums this post is on that the Intel build is better. It was one response. Thats ALL I got. No reason WHY, no pointers on where I can save money, etc. I'm trying to get a second, more educated opinion here on this, which is why I've come to you guys. I'm hoping (and naturally assuming) that you know better than the one person who responded to be able to give an educated opinion and assistance.

I don't know ANYTHING about the new hardware at all, to be honest. I've always lagged behind modern hardware as a habitual decision. Please, do not hesitate to tell me what I did wrong here or where I can save money, what works better, etc. I am on a budget, and while IDEALLY I'd like to save money here, I can bear with the price tag if I must. I can't see myself spending too much more than these current builds, because I'm out of work, but I'd like to get the upgrade done and overwith so I don't have to worry about doing it in the future. By all means though, suggest something thats going to be worth the money more than these that I've found, I'd really appreciate it.

Here's the link to it. Again, I apologize.

http://forums.filefront.com/tech-discussion/330597-time-upgrade.html#post3935376


Let me know if I left anything out.

EDIT: As for my comments regarding overclocking and the like, if someone is willing to assist me in learning how to PROPERLY overclock safely, I may be willing to change my opinion on the matter, but if you can, try to look at it as though the item wouldn't necessarily be overclocked when compared to the competing build/product.

I'm very wary of OC'ing anything so bear with me here, but by all means, I'm still very open-minded and may change this if I have a "mentor" so to speak.

More about : opinion build build

September 22, 2007 7:24:52 AM

First of all whats your price range? I assume your currents specs are of your current pc not what you want to build. I am in the same shoes as you but I have pretty much thrashed out what to get, this might be easier to discuss over msn, but I can help here if you want. Pm me about msn or just say forum if you want me to help on here
September 22, 2007 7:32:15 AM

Personally I don't think your current rig is too bad at all except you can't enjoy DX10 gaming and probably Crysis will not run smooth enough along with your 7800GT.

But it's all depending on how much you are willing to spend right now. If you are short on budget, I suggest wait and save your money for the upcoming Intel cpu (penryn, 45nm less power hungry more performance) and 'the rumor nvidia 9800' graphic card.

If you insist on upgrading now, you should consider changing the your whole hardware except your case and sound card I think.
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September 22, 2007 7:56:57 AM

Yeah, thats pretty much what I wanted to do. I'm just concerned that if I don't do it now, I might wait TOO long and end up missing some of this hardware. The cheaper stuff is getting pushed out the door so quickly it seems, that if I don't take the chance, I'll never get it.


Do you really think that just upgrading my video card will help though..? I mean, my performance is likely to be terrible even with a newer system because of the demanding physics in Crysis, for example.

Yes, Arnold, those were my current specs I listed here. I do agree, my current system isn't terrible at all, but if I'm to jump to Vista and DX10, my system isn't going to hack it much longer. I mean, Rainbow Six: Vegas, GRAW 2, Test Drive Unlimited, and even Oblivion make my computer really start to slow down (especially RB6, I usually get 20-30FPS at any given time, but more often than not, its usually 25 and below.), and thats with motion blur and AA/AF disabled. I usually run 1024x768 and don't often use AA/AF because its next to useless anyways in the long run at higher resolutions.

What I'm trying to achieve is something thats going to last. A while. Its gotta be semi-future proof while leaving room for improvement and still being within a reasonable budget. The $750 or so price tag on one of those builds is about as high as I'm comfortable going, I could go more, but financially, I'd be hurting a lot worse if I did. I'd really like to save money though, but don't know enough about the hardware anymore to know where I can find cheaper options and still retain functionality and performance.


Waiting.. I'm admittedly a bit impatient, and I don't know how long it'll be before I start working again, I'm in a position where I can still afford to not work and be fine (I haven't moved out yet, haven't gotten my driver's license either [the lack of such was the reason I was fired when we moved. I got stuck at home without a ride when a family emergency arose]) but I still need to try and conserve money just in case an emergency expenditure arises.

Thats kinda why I'm trying to get it outta the way now and not wait too much longer, even though I am paying more of a premium now by not doing so.

September 22, 2007 8:18:01 AM

I'll help you out to the best of my ability. What is your current price range?..Do you prefer amd or intel builds? If you want something to last a while as well as having overclockability if you plan to do so..I would recommend intel. If you can give me a budget to work with I can put a rig together for you and assist you with any questions you have.

I just checked up on your cpu support list for your mobo and it can run a x2 4800 if you want to stay with it...Which would you prefer?..a complete new rig or want to just upgrade?

There are numerous choices out there if you're a bit impatient. DDR3 is pricey and not really a good value atm unless you have no limit on funding. DDR2 will be around for a long while....It's also very cheap price wise so you can get a lot for your money. Graphics card wise if you want to get a high end choice you can nab a EVGA 8800 GTX without worrying. With their step up program you'll be able to swap in your card for a better one if they do indeed release a refresh of the 8800 (8900) or a new 9800....They may just release a mid range but I have a feeling we are getting a new high end this year. This way you can game now and if they do release a new highend you can just swap it out to their new top model by paying the difference. If it ends up only being a new midrange then you wouldn't have had to wait for no reason since you already have top card on the market...

PCI-E 2.0 might be a nice though but x38 mobos will cost quite a bit on release. If you find it justified then you may want to nab it. ATM no card can take up the full bandwidth of PCI-E 1.1...But not sure about the upcoming cards.

With the current prices on cpu's you can get away with a lot though...so just toss by what you're looking for and I'll give you some suggestions.
September 22, 2007 8:22:14 AM

Really you need an entirely new motherboard, you need DDR2 and a new processor, BUT we may have missed a trick; there is no reason why you couldnt go SLI on your current graphics card. It would make a big difference and the cards would be relatively cheap now, however if that is not going to be as good as the latest VGA I am not sure
September 22, 2007 8:25:50 AM

Kamrooz said:
I'll help you out to the best of my ability. What is your current price range?..Do you prefer amd or intel builds? If you want something to last a while as well as having overclockability if you plan to do so..I would recommend intel. If you can give me a budget to work with I can put a rig together for you and assist you with any questions you have.

I just checked up on your cpu support list for your mobo and it can run a x2 4800 if you want to stay with it...Which would you prefer?..a complete new rig or want to just upgrade?


Sorry to be so impertinent but would you mind doing the same for me as I am building a new one too and it would be a great help
September 22, 2007 8:27:52 AM

@ arnold:

I don't think I could consider SLI as an option to be honest. eVGA no longer makes my particular model of the 7800GT. For SLI, the revisions have to match, and mine was a short-lived revision (bought it on sale since they were trying to get rid of them in favor of the new revisions). I've always kinda felt SLI is a bit of a gimmick because the benefits are rarely enough to justify paying so much more for video hardware with at best, a 40% increase in performance.

If it were a reasonable option, believe me, I'd be all over it, hence my desire to move up to DDR2 and the like. I'll have to make up for not having two video cards and use the money I'd otherwise spend to keep the rest of my system up to par.


@Kamrooz:

Not to come across as a jerk or being pedantic, but I'll quote myself again :) 

"The $750 or so price tag on one of those builds is about as high as I'm comfortable going, I could go more, but financially, I'd be hurting a lot worse if I did."


Honestly, I don't have a preference, whatever is the better bang for the buck. I've basically got the video card, the HDD, and the RAM chosen, but those are up for change, although ideally, I'd like to stick with the video card I chose since its a decent card for the price, I believe. Don't know much else about the HDD and RAM compared to current standards though.

I rarely ever upgrade hardware more than once a year though, and with all the new technology coming out, I'd like to get something that, like you said, will last a while and work with DX10, Vista, and the like. My goals are to play my current games more smoothly (which would happen no matter what) and run Crysis as high as possible (barring AA/AF of course. I'm not a fan of the FPS-guzzling little demons that lie within those options)

Ideally, I'd like to keep my case and PSU if possible. At the very least, my PSU will be scraping by, I'm sure, but its a very good power supply so I expect it won't be too terribly unstable, at least long enough to last until I get a job again to buy a more powerful one. Suggestions on one wouldn't hurt though if you feel that it needs an upgrade.
Let me know if you need any more info, Kamrooz
September 22, 2007 8:39:32 AM

Flugnugget: Alright...Judging by your budget and options..I'd say new motherboard, processor, and ram...Your graphics card aint bad and it should do fine. It isn't DX10 but it's workable. If we limit to just a few parts we can get you a nice upgrade. Can you re-use your optical drives? (cd-roms)....If we just stick with motherboard, processor, and ram you can get a pretty nice setup...I'm not too worried about the psu. If it's currently powering your rig it should have a bit more room for a newer processor....I wouldn't recommend getting a new card since the performance difference from a 7800 GT to a x1950 pro isn't very much..and that would dent your pockets by around 140. Going any higher kinda limits your system. I think it'd be best if we just focused on mobo, cpu, and ram...If we have cash to spare I would recommend a new PSU to have further upgrade choices if you want to swap out for a new high end graphics card when you save the cash. I'm a bit worried though regarding your psu...It might BARELY get by or not have enough juice...So I'll try to plan around getting you a nice quality budget PSU on the list...IMO better to plan for the worst..If you go all out on mobo, cpu, and ram only to have the psu not have enough juice...and not have enough cash for a new one...kinda scary..I'll calculate out everything based on what you have to reuse and the new hardware...if it can get by we'll leave it be..if it's pushing the envelope will have to get a new psu.

What do you think?..sound like what you are looking for?..also a complete list of what can be reused would be nice..I know you said case, and psu...But what about other components..How old is that hard drive? Is it IDE/SATA? Are the cd rom drives still in good shape?...Anywhere we can make cuts the better..That way we can make sure you get as much for your money as possible.

Arnold: Seems I'll be making another rig for arnold also..lol..What's your budget?
September 22, 2007 8:40:51 AM

Sorry that I have to say this but 450W wont cut it, modern VGAs use 150W+ alone and modern power hungry stuff... If I were you I would boost it to 600W+
September 22, 2007 8:44:21 AM

Kamrooz: £1000, so about $2000. Thanks mate
September 22, 2007 8:50:59 AM

Arnold: Where are you going to be getting your parts from?...Local stores? Online?....If you are buying online a site around your area would be the best bet. This way you won't have to dump a lot on shipping. If you are going to be buying locally I can build a list for you and you can go searching....But if you have a etailer in london that you're planning to buy from it'd make it easier for me to just build the list and rig from there...Any big e-tailers in your area?

Flugnugget: Check my previous post..updated with information for you...
September 22, 2007 9:03:50 AM

Okay, lets see what we've got then, Kamrooz.


-I can keep my current opticals (well, my current CD drive has died on me, but I have a bunch of those laying around so I'm not strapped to find another, and my DVD reader is my DVD-RW drive, so I'm set in that regard.)

-My HDD is indeed a SATA, its from when I first put this build together, which was roughly... shoot, let me check. I haven't reformatted since I made this one, much to my chagrine. Its a 120GB I believe, 7200RPM.

-Floppy, well, who DOESN'T have a floppy drive. I don't have it plugged in though, I never need to use it except for BIOS stuff, and even that is evolving towards CD's and the such.

-Case & CPU as previously mentioned

-all peripherals, of course.

-Soundcard I'm sure can be reused. I'll hold off on an X-Fi for a while.



Basically what I need then is just a video card (I'll say it now, I'm biased towards nVidia, not a fan of how ATi does their driver releases. Bad experiences in the past. It may be pedantic, but I'd like to stay with nVidia. I know the software better and I'm more comfortable with it.) motherboard, RAM, and a CPU. A new HDD could be a benefit, but I can survive without it no problems. I'd imagine reformatting will redeem most of the space I've lost to crap I forgot about, hidden away in random folders.



As for the age of the build (and thus the age of the HDD), its at LEAST 533 days old (used WinZip's little days installed counter, heh..) so thats roughly 1.5-2 years? Sorry, math isn't my strong point.

I see you wish to focus on my CPU RAM and Motherboard. Now, don't get me wrong, I agree, but isn't my video card going to provide a more immediate benefit for what I'm paying? I'd imagine I could work in on my current PSU, it would certainly be grinding the thresholds, but it has good, stable rails, plus its only a little over a year old, if even. I feel a little guilty casting it off so soon (even though it'll go with the rest of the hardware that is no longer necessary from this build, into a second computer I'm building from spare parts.) if its still got some life in it.


Then again, I've always lived by the philosphy that its not useless until it ain't workin! Sorry if I'm being too ornery, I'm just trying to learn a bit more about the courses of action you recommend so I understand for future builds. I'm old fashioned, I didn't move up into PCI-X until I made this build, I swore by my AGP8x and Socket 478's prior. I just like hanging on to what I know.


Also, not sure if you needed to know, but I do my hardware purchasing from newegg and ZipZoomFly (I don't buy from other places because I don't know anything about them, and often they are rife with jacked-up shipping costs)
September 22, 2007 9:17:30 AM

Kamrooz: I use ebuyer.com and scan.co.uk

Thanks

Flugnugget: But the issue is that your ram is really quite slow slow compared to modern standards, and dont forget that not all image processing is done by the graphics cards. Which is why you need the CPU and RAM to be fast. Sorry if I explained that badly

Oh BTW this may make you laugh, my current comp is actually slightly less powerful (1GB less ram and I think next step down CPU) but I can still run oblivion on near full settings so I tihnk you may have something weird going on there with your comp
September 22, 2007 9:26:11 AM

arnold-edward said:
Kamrooz: I use ebuyer.com and scan.co.uk

Thanks

Flugnugget: But the issue is that your ram is really quite slow slow compared to modern standards, and dont forget that not all image processing is done by the graphics cards. Which is why you need the CPU and RAM to be fast. Sorry if I explained that badly

Oh BTW this may make you laugh, my current comp is actually slightly less powerful (1GB less ram and I think next step down CPU) but I can still run oblivion on near full settings so I tihnk you may have something weird going on there with your comp


Makes sense, I suppose. Thanks for the explanation.

Something I hadn't mentioned though is my Oblivion is quite modded. All kinds of graphical enhancements and the like. I'm not too suprised it gets a lower FPS, and comparitively speaking, it probably runs better than I give credit. I'm just really really sensitive to FPS changes.
September 22, 2007 9:42:10 AM

Ahh..So you want a new video card?..You stated in your last post you wanted to keep it...

Quote:
I've basically got the video card,


Thought you mean to re-use...nvm on that then...

the only problem is...Going from a 7800 GT to a higher card..Let's say a x1950 pro (using this as an example...sorry to say ATI has the best solutions in the 140-200 range)...would give you roughly 5-20 frames above your current solution. I know you would like a nvidia card instead but overall your 7800 GT isn't bad...If you want a new graphics card as well....We're going to be quite limited. Dumping 140 for a x1950 pro wouldn't give you THAT much of a benefit to validate the purchase. A X1950XT would stretch it to make it worthwhile but it costs around 200. To keep everything within price range we basically can't go higher the 650 even though you stated 750. at 650 you'll be paying roughly 50-52 in tax. Shipping would cost anywhere between 20-50. If we place in a graphics card it will really hinder the choices on mobo, ram, and cpu. We can get by with budget orientated mobo and ram choices but for the CPU you want something good to last you a while. If we toss a graphics card in the mix you're gonna have issues. Plus we might have to get a new psu as well which adds to the budget.

Personally I think it would be best to use the 7800 GT until you can save up around 200-300 to get a x1950XT or a 8800 GTS....Since you run in 1024 for gaming you can get away with the lower prices graphics cards...But with the budget you're not looking for the top cookie...

Also do you plan to OC at all?...Unfortunately it takes some research and I won't be able to help you with that...OC'ing is something you need to read into and learn to really understand what to do. They have a bunch of guides that do a bang up job...So that's no worries...But your choices on every aspect of this system will effect the end result...

Let's say you want a new graphics card. Even though you prefer nvidia...around the 140-240 range it's all pretty much ATI in the lead. Overall...Driver wise it can be a large debate..But IMO ATI updates their drivers more often then nvidia. But it's a fact that around this price range ati has better cards. X1950 pro is a steal. It may not offer DX10 support but it beats the 8600 GTS hands down. If we're talking about the oc'ed/superclocked versions of the GTS it can and will beat the x1950 pro in several benchmarks..But for it's price you can get a x1950xt which will beat all of them. In this price range..ATI is your choice..the nvidia solutions offer anything from 3-25 fps less running the same settings.

You can use the tomshardware chart to validate this between the x1950xt and 7950 GT to see the results..When you go into 1280 resolutions the x1950 xt increases the lead even further.

But yea..choice is yours...If you want a graphics card...x1950 pro wouldn't be much of an improvement..and a waste of funds on your cpu/mobo/ram.

If you want a graphics card we'll have to get a x1950XT to really see a difference...That costs around 200. which will put a dent into the rig...basically 450 for a ram, mobo, and cpu. Off the top of my head...I'd say a p35-DS3R gigabyte mobo..which is around 130, crucial ballistix memory modules...2x1 gb is 150 (these are overclocking modules running d9 microns chips..if you want to oc they are great..if you don't want to OC we can get cheaper budget memory)....CPU...have to nab a 6750 which is around 195 on newegg...

With a graphics card this would put us around 680 or so. tax and shipping probably around the 750-780 mark..now the big problem...The x1950XT's are previous generation..high end..They will require a new psu...We don't have room for it in the budget...If you want we could get a 8600 GTS ..it's a downgrade though pretty much...the x1950 pro is better...But then again it runs into being not worth the money..

Overall..Your best solution in my eyes..would be to get a new psu, ram, mobo, cpu...Save up around 200-280 in the following months...then grab yourself a x1950XT or a 8800 GTS 320...With the resolution you play in these will handle pretty much anything your throw at them. They aren't the best of the best but they are heavily wanted. the 8800 GTS may have only 320 megs of memory unlike it's bigger brothers..But it has a faster clock to make up for it. You'll actually see this beating the 640 version in a few games in 1024/1280 res..But going up into higher resolutions the 640 would obviously begin beating it by a pretty good margin.

So choice is yours. If you want a rig to last you a while I would recommend saving cash for a graphics card and getting it 2-3 months down the line. Also do you plan to OC at all?..If you don't we can get away with an AMD rig which would be cheaper....You could shave off around 40-70. With..off the top of my head a x2 5600/amd based mobo. If you want an intel rig and don't plan to OC we can get some cheaper modules as well. You can pretty much get away with value ram if you're not oc'ing...

the choice is yours. If you plan to take my idea..You'll atleast be getting quality ram and a very well recommended mobo. You can also OC with this rig no problem...Then a few months down the line nab your self a x1950xt or 8800 GTS 320mb and you've got a rig to last you a while.
September 22, 2007 9:50:29 AM

Thankfully for you two I'm gonna be up all night..so I can pretty much get a list out to both of you tonight...

Arnold..With that budget you can pretty much get yourself a kick ass rig. But pricing differences might hinder it compared to a US based rig. I believe london would slightly overcharge but it's still safe to say you'll get a nice rig. I'll get to building it in a sec but what are your uses?....All computers need to be made with their uses in mind. Are you only going to game or do anything else?..3d modeling?..photoshop?...video editing?..everything ties together..
September 22, 2007 10:02:57 AM

Jesus, Kam, you make babies cry with the beauty of that post.


I'm sorry, but thats the most informative and helpful post I've read throughout the entire process. I think people could learn a thing or two about assistance from you.




Okay, so it sounds like I may indeed hold off on the video card, as much as it would pain me to do so (I'm in a habit of having a video card be one of the first things I upgrade, whenever I did a full system overhaul, I always upgraded my videocard as well) I think the idea of not getting the 8800GTS (Must. Have. DX10. If it didn't have DX10, I'd be more into trying the X1950XT, or viceversa... I think that makes sense... well, I don't know what I'm saying anymore. Its 3AM...)

I don't have an overwhelming desire to overclock, honestly, I can't justify risking the hardware and messing something up, only to ruin it all and be outta luck. I'm just not willing to risk my hardware like that. Casually, maybe, but I don't forsee myself really getting into it if at all. My lack of experience cost me my last build before this one I'm using now.

As for tax, if I purchase from ZipZoomFly and Newegg, I don't get any sales tax (I live in Washington, USA, but neither has a location in washington, which means they can't collect sales tax, and on top of that, I'm technically an Oregon resident with a temporary residence in WA, and as such, cannot be taxed on most purchases anyways. [Oregon has no sales tax, but I'll be damned if they say the income tax is reasonable....]) Worst case scenario, I can probably have my dad in Oregon purchase the parts for me and pay him back for it.

Okay, enough running off on a tangent. I don't even know where I was going with that. If we're assuming I have no sales tax, I presume that makes no difference in the fact that it would still blow the budget by getting the 8800 as well as whichever system build we decided on?

If I can get the video card and remain within reasonable reach of that budget, I'll get the 8800GTS because its about as good as I'm going to get for the price, and if I'm paying for an upgrade, it may as well be an upgrade I can live with for a while, having DX10 support and the like.

If it does -if the tax not being factored in still blows the budget, I mean-, then I suppose I can live without the video card as previously stated.


AMD or Intel, well, thats a tough choice. My current bias is AMD only because I have an AMD and its more stable and runs cooler than my now dead Intel build, however, if Intel provides better bang for the buck, then I'm going with Intel, or vice versa. RAM, heh, I don't have a clue. I'll take your word for whatever the recommendation is.

Same with a motherboard, as long as it has the PCI slot necessary for my soundcard, SATA support (what doesn't, nowadays), numerous USB ports (nonissue, most gaming hardware has lots), and a good warranty in case it dies on me, I'm happy.

PSU, well, I only know of OCZ's modstream PSU's from back when I got this one, and it was on the recommendation of someone when I was having stability issues. It ended up not solving the problem (heat related, my CPU was cooking itself) but has maintained rock solid rails, so I'd imagine their newer offerings are good, but hey, whatever you think would do me best.



Oh, if my grammar and writing is a pain to read, let me know. I get it alot because I run off on tangents and tend to over-explain or not use proper puncuation. I write very colloquially. Also, if I missed anything let me know, I'm staying up all night as well.
September 22, 2007 10:56:37 AM

Kamrooz: gaming is core, but I will be doing a bit of picture editing and I have always wanted to try my hand at a bit of game mods etc.

Thanks for this mate

Flug: One thing I would like to say is that you dont want to HDDs working in tandem as they have a history of unreliability. Also have you looked up wether you can do that exchange thing with nividia to get money of a more expensive card?


BTW its 11:55am here
September 22, 2007 11:06:06 AM

I pretty much agree with Kamrooz's suggestions. It's better to make this built tow folds and end up with a built you like then compromise and end up with something that really annoys you. In the mean time your 7800 GT should be ok till you upgrade it.

As for PSU, I like my new corsair 620. The trick here is to go with a reputable company. Seasonic, PC power and cooling, Antec just to name a few. This is certainly an area you don't want to skimp on quality.
September 22, 2007 11:06:50 AM

lol...No worries. BTW...Is rebates alright with you? I found a killer deal on newegg for the memory I had in mind. With a massive rebate.

Alright I made a miracle...

If rebates are ok for you..Then you'll be really happy with this. Keep in mind this is above budget.....It's totaled to 845.00...before rebates.....that will bring it down to 768. Since you stated you pay no tax....You'd only have to pay for shipping. So all at once itll be around 860-900.But the rebates should bring it down to the 800-810 dollar mark if you can stretch this..But..you would be getting..

-------------------

CPU-
C2D 6750
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

We can't afford quadcore..But this dualcore product will satisfy your urges for years to come.

-------------------

OCZ GameXStream 600 watt
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Has a 10 dollar mail in rebate. A Tier 2 power supply that is extremely well priced.

-------------------

Gigabyte P35-DS3R
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

A very popular board atm. Blend of excellent performance and overclockability for a great price.

-------------------

Crucial Ballistix 2X1 GB PC2 6400 (DDR2 800) kit
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

a 47 dollar mail in rebate! Now let me just say one thing. Don't let the price fool you here. The Crucial Ballistix series uses D9 micron chips which are the rave of DDR2 atm. They are massively overclockable and this is a literal steal. The fact that they are on sale just happened to be lucky for you. These are ddr2 800 modules though. Your board supports ddr 1066. But these same modules in 1066 form cost around 155 on newegg without a mail in rebate. These modules can easily overclock to 1066 with more headroom to spare. The D9 microns are the cream of the crop for OC'er in DDR2...With the new Z9 micron the crave for DDR3. I can't stress this enough though..Don't think lowly of these modules just because you can nab them for such a cheap price with the rebate...These ARE what you want for overclocking and stability.

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EVGA 320-P2-N815-AR GeForce 8800GTS 320MB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

There is one version from EVGA that's also slightly cheaper...by 5 dollars. This one has a increase on 75 mhz on the gpu core with 100 mhz on the memory. Overall a better buy..especially if you are afraid to OC...worth it..Also since it's evga..If you find yourself with extra cash within the next 3 months you can take this card and use their step up program. You can trade it in and pay the difference to get one of their better cards...a bigger GTS or a GTX..or who knows...maybe they might end up releasing a new high end in november which you can swap out for...If that does happen DO SWAP IT!..it might set you back 300 but it will be the new king of the hill...and will be for a year...great investment...choice is yours....

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Your baby ^_^. Now you see why I said it is slightly above budget. But with the rebates you should only go as far as 40-60 overbudget. Considering what you are getting I would say for it if you can spare the cash. GET THIS RIG!..lol..I'd trade up my pile of junk (Broke..can't get a new rig atm >_<) in a second..

Now...If that is pushing the budget too far..You have two other solutions for the graphics card. There are two ati cards in the 200-230 range.

first is a saphire x1900XT...Don't get this wrong though. The X1900XT is still better then a x1950 pro....The X1900XT/X1950XT both run on the r580 core...With 48 shaders and 16 pipelines..While the x1950 pro runs on 36 shaders and 12 pipelines. So even though it's numbered backwards it's better then the x1950 pro...Unfortunately almost all e-tailers are out of stock or have marked up the x1950XT....You were able to nab it before on newegg for 170..But they marked it up to 200 and now it's sold out for that model. All that's left are overpriced versions which aren't worth it...not enough bang per buck..

But these X1900XT are still a huge improvement over your current card...check out the charts here.

http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics_2007.html?modelx...

Also notice this is in oblivion..If you want change around to the other game titles in the resolution you play in. Notice the even larger gap in performance...Here are two cards which can satisfy your budget while giving you a performance boost.

priced @ 200.00
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

priced @ 230
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If you buy the 200.00 x1900xt...You will be at exactly 750 dollars without the rebates in effect yet..so it would drop it down to 693 dollars after rebates...Keep in mind though you'll have to dish out cash on shipping..but you'll get the money back on the rebates..

If you grab the 230 dollar x1900xt (better cooler and I believe will end up being a better product..not all graphics cards are the same...even if they share the same name..They all perform different from each company..)...you'll end up with 780 at checkout...and you'll have to dish out shipping as well..over budget again just like the other choices...but worth it...with rebates it'll bring it down to 723...so you'll break even after rebates hopefully..maybe 10-20 above budget.

A word of advice though...if you're considering the 230 dollar version..you may as well nab a 8800 GTS...the difference in performance between the 8800GTS and x1900/x1950 cards is pretty msasive...With the GTS rig..You'll be able to enjoy all the new titles with ease...The x1900xt solution would offer the same results but the frame rates will be a bit less...Overall go for the 8800 GTS choice..I know it's overbudget..I feel your pain there...But the performance increase is worth it...With the 8800 GTS it will be 845 at checkout. Shipping probably 30-50...so almost 900...subtract 72 for rebates to price of 773...with shipping ontop of it around 800-820 after rebates...before rebates around 870-900...reasonably above budget...but you'd have to dish out more cash at the start...but you'd get it back...

The choice is yours...Hope this helps out..
September 22, 2007 11:08:49 AM

accidentally double posted when I meant to edit..I hit quote..dangit!..my bad...I'll get to work on your rig arnold after a short soda break..brb.
September 22, 2007 11:44:35 AM

although I dislike posting after myself....ESEPCIALLY after I accidentally double posted.....I have a feeling you won't check up on the post before that I edited..so making a new post so you can atleast see my question so I can get building...lol..sorry moderators don't kill me >_<...

Quote:
BTW Arnold..I forgot to ask. Peripherals?..Do you need a Keyboard? Mouse? Monitor?...Or just the computer?..Also do you plan to overclock?...Or will this be a stock rig.

Also do you have to pay VAT taxes?...I noticed they have with and without options on the e-tailers site...
September 22, 2007 12:56:59 PM

Arnold: Gotcha

Flug: Tell me if there is anything else you need help with. Hopefully you can nab that 8800 GTS option. Even though it's a tad bit more pricey it really is worth it. If you feel uneasy about anything just ask away. =P.
September 22, 2007 6:45:36 PM

I don't know much about rebates (had one with eVGA, I had my mom send it in since at the time, I didn't have a means to order online, and the order was under her name. Not sure if we ever got it. It looks like they all end on the 2nd though, so if I pay a little bit extra and get the shipping on the stuff from ZipZoomFly (I managed to save a few extra bucks by getting a few of the products from zipzoomfly and avoid shipping costs, but I may have to suck it up and go for it.

I'll have to add up the totals between the two and see who comes out cheaper with shipping added (ZipZoomFly ships free, but its for 5-7 day, and if I wanna make rebate (and get that beautiful baby running), I'll have to have it shipped 3 day.


I honestly cannot see anything wrong with this rig. Granted, it breaks budget a fair bit, I'm sure my case can hold it (If you weren't aware, the TsunamiDream is notorious for its... limited internal size, beings as its a mid-size case. I have it set in such a way that the video card (which I know is definitely longer than the 7x series) and its power connection shouldn't have problems fitting. Worst case (heh) scenario, I have an old steel case (its pretty big, has decent airflow) I can put the stuff into until I can afford to buy a new case.


Sorry for my language, but that this is **** SEXY. Kamrooz, I owe you one, you've been leaps and bounds more helpful than anyone else I've requested assistance from on this project. This build, its a bit more expensive, and admittedly I'm uncomfortable spending the money, but screw it, smoke 'em if ya got 'em, is what I was once told. I have enough to tide me over for car insurance, and still have a reasonable amount of cash in the bank for any expenditures.

Let me rid my computer of spyware (I usually scan the heck outta my computer before I do any online purchasing, just to be on the safe side. Can't take any chances these days..
September 22, 2007 7:17:00 PM

lol...No worries man ^_^. I do the same thing with spyware checking as well. I'm paranoid like that.

The nice thing about this rig is no money would go wasted. If you nabbed a x1900XT you would have seen some big performance from your current card. But after all, it is still previous gen. But with this card you're getting DX10 support along with it. Also keep in mind if you end up saving some more money in the next 3 months..You can trade it in for a 8800GTX for an extra 205 dollars (they lowest 8800 GTX from EVGA is 499.99..worth it when you get the cash)..If you have the funds. Wait till at least november though if you decide to..during october nvidia will release information about their new card which should come out in november...Also if a 9800 GTX or 8900 GTX just happens to pop up..You can trade it in for that as well. If that happens I can't urge enough how you really should step it up. Afterall..If it is a 9800 GTX..it'll be at the top of the hill for minimum a year...

Also..The only downside is we couldn't get you a aftermarket heatsink + thermal compound. But the stock heatsink and thermal goop should do fine for now. The fact that we got you a quality mobo, ram, psu, and cpu means you have overclocking room now. You got some tasty d9 microns in that rig...So you'll be able to overclock quite a bit if you plan to do so. Overall a very worth upgrade.....But if you do plan to oc....You might want to get an aftermarket cooler down the road when you recover...Since you have a dual core you can probably OC a bit with the stock heatsink..If it was a quad you might have had a bit of heating issues...But for an after market cooler..off the top of my head..

A Thermalright Ultra 120 Extreme or
Thermalright Ultima 90 (Make sure it's ultima...not ultra) or
Tuniq tower 120

Any of these 3 would do..They are at the top of their chain. If you dislike the size of the tuniq tower and ultra 120's massive heatsink..the Ultima 90 will deliver almost the same performance at a much smaller size...If you plan to get the thermalright ultra 120 or ultima 90..couple it with a Scythe S-FLEX SFF21F fan and you have the best cooling possible. The Ultra 120 and ultima 90 both come with clips to attach a fan of your choice. Even though the ultima 90 is smaller it has two clips..one for a 90mm fan and one for a 120mm fan....Also add some Arctic Silver 5 and you're set..

This is farther down the road though. But by getting the build you just nabbed...you got a rig that has overclock potential as well as quality components....You also already have the overclocking ram that's heavily recommended...enjoy ^_^.

Hopefully you can make the rebates..especially the memory rebate which is literally mind blowing to let them sell for that cheap....Enjoy ^_^

Do remember though!...9800 GTX or 8900 GTX = STEP UP NOW!...lol..God..talking about new hardware gets me giddy..Even though I can't afford it!..haha..bah..I think about a 9800 GTX then think about my cruddy x700 pro..it makes me want to cry...lol..

If you have any questions just holler! ^_^.
September 22, 2007 7:35:08 PM

That stepping up is EXACTLY what I plan to do, I'd imagine by the time it would be reasonable to do so, I'll be working again, so I have a financial backing and I'm not running myself bankrupt.

I'll look into those coolers. I had a Zalman a while back but gave it to my dad when my P4 roasted itself. I wish I could find my Arctic Silver though, that stuff is expensive and I only used it once... I'll have to root it out if heat becomes an issue.


I too, get giddy when I consider upgrading all of my stuff or building computers for people. Its a fun process. The not-so-fun part is finding my XP CD and then reformatting, but I like to have a fresh start. I'd liked to have had a fresh start.... a year ago.


lol...


Thanks again. I'm going to order the parts right now, I'll let you know if anything comes up.
!